Mary Oliver teaches me
in each sweet beat of her poetry
to spend the morning in nature,
glide into the pace of dew,
attend to the chatter of frogs,
chart the soil with seeds,
channel intentions of deeds,
and simply, pay attention.
So I dawn into this day,
enter the classroom of gardens
merge my heart into magnolia
renew my vows of vision,
clear away last season’s straw to
trumpet the March of green and blast
daffodil sunshine into sight.
I see the wisdom of the bright
red bird in the winter-bare wisteria
perching at the center
of the cardinal directions
chirping at the edge of equinox
The volunteer violet crocus beckons me, wakens
the bed of chocolate mint and pine-needle umber carpet
quilted with petaled cones.
I feed the goats, and together we chew on the calm quiet.
Ducks dip their heads beneath the pond’s surface
elongate their necks and stretch their wings,
create perfectly concentric ripples reflecting a wavy oak.
How have I forgotten how
How water, earth, air and sun
sustain me, hold me, feed me?
How as farms provide food for the body,
my gardens nourish my spirit.
How when I start the day this way,
“…I start the day
in happiness, in kindness”
How I find myself
I am practicing to be
as grounded and observant as you,
Mary Oliver. That your ritual
is your daily bread, your daily prayer,
your daily walk, your daily poem
teaches me essential beauty of daily practice
to walk my path of being me
and honor this “one wild and precious life.”